Eastern Belle lands Lord Weinstock Memorial Stakes for John Gosden
Eastern Belle, the 9/4 favourite ridden by William Buick, held off the late surge of Pelerin to lose her maiden status in the Listed Lord Weinstock Memorial Stakes (Registered As The Ballymacoll Stud Stakes) at Newbury this afternoon.
John Gosden’s daughter of Champs Elysees had finished second to Marsh Daisy at Goodwood last time and stayed on well up the straight to get the better of long-time leader Queen Of Ice in the final furlong.
It looked as though she was going to win comfortably, but Marco Botti’s Pelerin finished with a rattle to lose by just a neck after getting going too late under Martin Harley.
Gosden won this race two years ago with Great Heavens, who went on to take the Lancashire Oaks and Irish Oaks. The trainer said: “Today’s race was ideal as there aren’t many on offer for her over this trip. We could have gone for an ordinary maiden somewhere but this prize is perfectly positioned in the calendar between the Oaks and the Ribblesdale.”
Earlier on the card, Richard Hannon won the opening Pheasant Inn Maiden Stakes with Estidhkaar, ridden by Paul Hanagan, with Sheikh Hamdan’s other runner Mustadeem finishing a half-length second. The winner will now head to the Group 2 July Stakes at Newmarket next month.
England goalkeeper Joe Hart can be forgiven for having other things on his mind, but he is involved, along with comedian John Bishop, in the Livvys Racing Group syndicate who landed the Al Basti Equiworld Handicap with Know Your Name.
The 8/1 shot, trained by David Evans and ridden by Adam Kirby, got the better of a battle with Spirit Raiser to win by a neck.